BOSTON (AP) — The manslaughter case against a former Boston College student accused of encouraging her boyfriend to take his own life will head toward trial, prosecutors said Friday.
A court this week partially denied the defense’s motion to dismiss, finding that Inyoung You’s words could have caused Alexander Urtula to kill himself, Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins’ office said. The judge did dismiss one of the prosecution’s theories, ruling that You’s failure to summon help didn’t cause his suicide, Rollins’ office said.
Prosecutors say You sent Urtula, of Cedar Grove, New Jersey, thousands of messages in the last two months of their relationship, including many urging him to “go kill yourself.” Urtula died in Boston on May 20, the day of his Boston College graduation.
The case grimly echoes that of Michelle Carter, who garnered headlines and an HBO film. The young Massachusetts woman was sentenced to 15 months in jail after she was convicted in 2017 of involuntary manslaughter for using text messages and phone calls to encourage her boyfriend, Conrad Roy, to kill himself in 2014.
An attorney for You said the defense is pleased that the court dismissed one of the prosecution’s two theories.
“With respect to the single remaining theory, the Court noted that this is an incredibly complex area of law and that unlike in the Carter case Ms. You repeatedly begged her boyfriend not to commit suicide. We think this is a critical fact which will ultimately exonerate Ms. You,” Howard Cooper said in a statement.